Types Of Writers

The wonderful world of language has many prolific types of writers who use written communication to express ideas and opinions. While they primarily exist in worlds with different laws that govern them, they co-exist in our world and play a significant role in advocating positive change.

Types of writers exist under various collective groups. Novelists and poets are creative and literary writers, lyricists and playwrights are performative writers, scholars and critics are academic & interpretive writers, bloggers are reportage writers, and report writers are utilitarian writers.

Writers come in many different flavors, although none of them are bad! Let’s explore the characteristics of different writers, what they focus on when perfecting their craft, and famous examples of these prolific writers.

Novelist

Novelists are fiction and non-fiction storytelling authors, although while all authors are writers, not all writers are authors. Imagination is the most potent weapon of mass destruction accessible to a Novelist, for it allows them to create, displace, and rearrange a world for others.

The sentence patterns of a Novelist are not only for storytelling but to project the text from the page by personifying them. These words become communicable through relatable concepts and ideas presented by the novelist.

Each world contains the footprints of a personal journey, an expectant heart, and palpable anticipation of the possibilities that lie before the colorful personalities that inhabit the world. The laws that govern them can often reveal the mindset of a Novelist and hint at their writer’s Voice.

The phenomenon is a fantastical term adopted by critics to describe the distinctive qualities of written work as speech. The voice of literary work, for instance, highlights the style, tone, and personality injected into the novel by the author.

Differences arise from how authors address their readers rather than changing how they portray the events in their novels. Experienced novelists with a strong command of language know how to make subtle changes to improve how readers receive their stories.

Novelists may choose to write professionally and earn a living from their work, while others might write for an avocation. There are many aspiring novelists, but it takes work to become a celebrated author. Very few gain renown and considerable prestige for their efforts.

Short Story Writer

While pictures are worth a thousand words, an enticing short story digestible in one sitting is worth discussing with a thousand people. A short story writer directs readers to relatable and self-contained incidents intending to get them into a state of surprise, mystery, or emotion.

Short story writers are almost as ancient as the stories they write. They birthed short stories with their recollection of old literature like fairy tales, folk tales, legends, anecdotes, and fables.

Modern society has also produced its own caliber of short story writers. They adore storytelling, they’re in no short supply, and they cannot help but speak about it every hour of the day. Have you heard of a rumor-rist?

Since short stories are compressed, writers tend to lull readers into a place of comfortability by making characters relatable and giving them an allure that keeps readers on edge.

Ernest Hemmingway was such a writer with his Iceberg Theory style of writing. It allowed him to use as little as possible to extract the most meaning and to prune language so that it intensified the truth and left readers wanting to know more.

Hemmingway wrote several famous pieces, one of his best being A Clean, Well-Lighted Place.

Poet

Poets combine the properties of words, speech, and emotion to brew a poetry piece that relates directly to the cognitive senses of a reader or listener. Poetry is similar to the ancient art of alchemy, where Poets attempt to mature and purify words to perfect the material.

Using rhymes, alliteration, and assonance, Poets transform text into words that carry meaning and add color to an otherwise black-and-white reality. Shakespeare often wrote of the vicissitudes of love, as in Romeo and Juliet when he wrote, “Parting is such a sweet sorrow.”

The human heart needs an outlet for expression and creativity, and so many took up the poet’s mantle. In 1927, archaeologist Sir Leonard Woolley found texts dating back to approximately 2285-2250 BCE and marking Enheduanna – a Mesopotamian princess, prophetess, and poet – as the earliest poet in history. 

Some poets like William Shakespeare also become playwrights who step into the theater to bring their words to life with a visual rendition. While not all poems become theater plays, they still add significant value to the world of poetry.

Poets draw heavily from personal experience, as with John Donne. Throughout his life, John lived as a poet, scholar, secretary, and soldier, later becoming a cleric for the Church of England.

Satirist

Satirists wield wit as a weapon to ridicule an individual’s or society’s decisions and current state. Their prodding reveals the infallibility and often ridiculousness of said subjects, particularly concerning politics. Human villainy, like greed and corruption, are also popular satyrical topics.

Satirists enjoy using hyperboles, sarcasm, and irony to bring justice to their meaning while still appeasing the humorous itch of the reader. Satyrical texts can take the form of several other genres, with some writers preferring poetry, whacky cartoon dialogues, or media advertising. 

M. de Voltaire was a 17th-century philosopher and satirist who wrote Candide – a satirical piece about optimism – which involved numerous reputable lyricists and later made its way into the opera. Satyrical writings like this usually include a hint of Absurdism for a whimsical effect.

Absurdism subtlely highlights the humor of satire as a discrepancy between the rational man and the irrational universe.

Jonathan Swift was an Anglo-Irish satirist who lived in the 17th century and is still a renowned writer. He wrote famous texts like A Tale of a Tub and A Modest Proposal.

Lyricist

A lyricist writes constructs the choruses and verses of your favorite songs by creating the most enjoyable lyrics. Lyricist comes from the word lyric, which originates from the Greek lura (lyre), French lyrique, and Latin lyricus.

Note that a lyricist is different from a composer. While a lyricist writes the spoken words of music, a composer deals with the technical aspects of music, creating harmony, melody, and arrangement.  

There are no rules that bind lyricists to a single writing approach. Instead, they can be satyrical, humorous, or remind listeners of the song about past events that left an impression on them. They aim to write lyrics that elevate the music and make the listener receive every word as their own.

Tom Lehrer was a famous American satirist and lyricist renowned for creating parodies of popular songs. He wrote The Elements, combining Gilbert and Sullivan’s Major-General’s Song with the chemical elements. He adapted the work of other writers to create original works.

It’s normal for lyricists to add words to a completed song. Sometimes lyricists and composers collaborate – although with varying input – to create music. Lyrcists can also add words to existing tunes, like when Johnny Burke worked on Misty with Erroll Garner.

Other partnerships between lyricist and composer are entirely independent, with no collaborative effort whatsoever – like with Bernie Taupin and Elton John.

Playwright

Playwrights are the programmers of the ancient world, using words to create an outcome that enhances a narrative through dialogue. They aim to accomplish a similar feat to novelists by introducing themes from daily life, society & politics, and love & war to evoke a response from readers.

The term playwright originates from the Middle English pleye and old English pleġa, meaning play, game, drama). The word wright relates to an old archaic English meaning artisan or builder. A modern example of this combination is a shipwright – someone who builds ships.

The greatest challenge of a playwright is getting the characters to come to life on stage. It requires them to step into the shoes of their characters and ensure the language matches the dialogue. The dialogue should demand the attention of the audience throughout the performance.

By getting readers and listeners to connect emotionally with the characters and their circumstances, playwrights transition from a good play to something personal, relatable, and valuable to the audience.

Playwrights also re-write and adapt the work of others or literary works from other genres to create their unique works. Greek playwrights like Euripides, Aeschylus, and Sophocles are popular choices for modern playwrights to revisit and find creative material.

Adaptations may perfectly represent the original or have different interpretations throughout the play. Writers can choose to create unique renditions that give the audience a new and exciting perspective on ideas that may seem outdated.

Speechwriter

Speechwriters wield language and imagination to help others express their gratitude, sorrow, appreciation, or thoughts to an audience. Their writing may address individuals or crowds and often contain words that exalt the listener in an attempt to inspire or persuade them.

The words chosen by a speechwriter enhance the characteristics and personality of the one delivering the speech, as was the case with charismatic leaders like Nelson Mandela and skilled orators like Cicero. When used in a court of law, they provide a compelling argument to gain favor with the judge.

Words have immense power, and who enjoys power more than high-ranking officials? Speechwriters with a particular knack for words get employment from executives in the private and government sectors.

The responsibility of a speechwriter lies in determining the central themes, points, and hidden messages that will make the biggest splash. It often demands that they have thick skin and can accept constructive criticism and draft the necessary changes into the final speech.

The most difficult pill to swallow is the reality of anonymity. In his famous speech, John. F Kennedy stated it is more important to serve your country than ask what it can do for you. Should he, the speechwriter Ted Sorensen, or both receive credit?

Critic

Critics evaluate and discuss the extent of success of people, places, things, and events. Due to the flexibility of their writing, they involve themselves with theatrical, artistic, literary, and even architectural works.

Through careful assessment, critics look at the whom, what, and why to give an impartial analysis of the subject they critique. They may look at the reasons for language usage, the delivery approach, and whether it was appropriate to execute the delivery at the current time. 

Once critics conclude their evaluation and present their findings, they typically include their qualifications and thought processes supporting their writing. Healthy criticism requires that a critic understand the subject and highlight the aspects of the subject they assess.  

Some critics have extensive knowledge of the subject matter, with a history as a novelist. Both accomplished writers, James Wood and Charles Baudelaire, had their criticisms published.

Note that critics with poor writing abilities or stigmas produce only superficial work. While no one can know everything about a particular subject at any time, a critic worth their salt will use insight and wisdom to write a critique that gives way to understanding.

Impartiality devoid of friends and enemies is the cup from which all successful critics drink. Unnecessary cruelty will cause critics to lose the respect of their fellow writers.

Scholar (Researcher)

A scholar is a writer that involves themselves with intellectual pursuits, pursuing academic works in an area of study. They also represent professors and researchers at a university. These are highly-qualified individuals with masters and doctorate degrees in their field of study.

Scholars are not necessarily part of a university or academic institution; they may be public intellectuals that work outside an academy and publish their findings on a public forum for discussion.

Scholars or Researchers write about life-long discoveries that significantly impact how people think, reason, and live their daily lives. Philosophers and scientists spend their entire lives trying to find the meaning of life’s greatest mysteries.

Nicolaus Copernicus wrote his famous title De revolutionibus orbium coelestium, which points out that the sun is stagnant at the center of the universe and the planets rotate around it.

In The Origin of Species, Charles Darwin recorded his findings that populations evolve through generations of natural selection.

In his book The Interpretation of Dreams, Sigmund Freud wrote about the effects of the unconscious mind and how it relates to dream interpretation.

These findings forever changed how people understand their world and the role of humanity within the world.

Translator

Translators are the travelers and explorers of the writing world, venturing across the vast ocean of languages to give meaning and intention to foreign text. Their role in cultural exchange saw the first translation of the Rosetta Stone hieroglyphs in 1822.

The capacity for good translation often relies on understanding the target language’s cultural, behavioral, and historical nuances.

One of the most effective methods for translative writing involves spending time in a place where the target language originates. It allows the translator to understand the relationship between words and cultural concepts.

The word bird may conjure ideas of pets and companions in one culture but food and sustenance in another.

The work of a translator is a fascinating process that requires careful research and consideration to provide an accurate translation of the text. It is challenging when concepts, words, connotations, and phrases exist in the language you translate from but not the target language.

An example of a word or phrase that connects to a cultural concept is the Japanese phrase 仕方がない (shikata ga nai). It points to the will of the Japanese people to remain dignified when facing wrongdoing or tragedy. They accept that the circumstances are out of their control, and it roughly translates into It is what it is in English.

Blogger

Bloggers produce writings that vary by topic and serve to inform the reader about a particular subject so that it benefits them. Bloggers don’t require official authorization for publication and can publish their works anytime via the world wide web. Blogs have become popular since the 1990s.

Blog content comes in the form of commentary, and readers can respond to the content to engage with the blogger to discuss the material, similar to an online forum. A successful blog contains well-researched information and links to information that explain concepts within the blog post.

Blog subjects can range from religion to arts & crafts, politics, science, or sports. Others allow readers to delve into a blogger’s life when the writer discusses or shares personal events.

Blog writers typically include text, links to additional resources, and digital images in their posts to make them more appealing.

In many ways, blog writers write newsletters or personal letters to readers who need answers to unanswered questions. The online presence of others with whom they can share ideas separates it from regular letters and allows both parties to gain new insights and perspectives on a subject.

Since the internet is a boundless plane of existence with limitless potential, there is a lot of potential for bloggers to gain popularity and earn a living if they get a lot of traffic – or visitors – who visit their site.

At a stage, the blog writer will come to know their regular readers, except for new readers who join the fray. Bloggers may need to adjust their writing style or approach at times to compensate their audience, similar to how social media streamers focus their efforts on entertaining their viewers.

Memoirist

The word Memoir comes from the French mémoire and Latin memoria, which means memory or remembrance. Memoirists write about impactful, scandalous, or unusual events that occurred in their lives.

Their stories quickly catch readers’ attention because they are relatable, prod directly at the imagination, and contain an element of being human.

While most of the content is factual, readers understand that some details may be inaccurate due to personal biases or emotional experiences. The experiences of a memoirist can be much more selective than, say, an autobiography that carries the expectation of completeness.

While a biography reveals a life story, a memoir tells of the life in a story. It focuses on particular times and events in the memoirist’s life that became the impetus of change in how they live the rest of their lives.

Memoirists have a long tradition of recording events that changed their lives. Julius Ceaser wrote Commentarii de Bello Gallico, commenting on the Gallic Wars. In early Japan, the daughter of Sugawara no Takasue wrote a Japanese memoir in the Heian period called Sarashina Nikki.

Report Writer

Report writers collect, organize and document important information so the receiver can make informed decisions. They play a vital role in the success of risky endeavors because their input enables people to see the forest rather than focusing too intently on the trees.

Florence Nightingale demonstrated impressive resolve when she wrote and submitted reports to bring about administrative reform regarding military health. Her documented experience during the Crimean War gave her a golden opportunity to report on the possibility of improvement.

Eight hundred pages and six months later, her documented details about reform, controversial subjects, and statistical data about architecture and sanitary became the leading authority for improving the efficiency of hospital administration in the British Army.

In the modern business world, reports help an organization spot the potential for growth. They reinforce good ideas and practices and help to evolve glaring inefficiencies that are a detriment to the business.

A report writer can highlight the performance level of professionals and reduce the time it takes to make crucial decisions. It becomes easier for the business to find solutions, and new plans and policies are easy to establish because the company is familiar with the pitfalls.

Conclusion

There are many types of writers, each with a special gift for serving others with their articulate and intellectual mind. Whether you fancy yourself a playwright, memoirist, or report writer, know that those who came before you contributed to the change that brought about the modern world. It is now your opportunity to do the same and share your knowledge with those seeking answers.

References

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Writer

https://www.audible.com/blog/quotes-romeo-and-juliet

https://www.penguin.co.uk/articles/childrens-article/different-types-of-poetry-for-kids

https://www.bbc.com/culture/article/20221025-enheduanna-the-worlds-first-named-author

https://scroll.in/article/913287/enheduanna-the-worlds-first-known-author-was-a-priestess-in-ancient-mesopotamia

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Donne

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Short_story

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernest_Hemingway

Alan Reiner
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